The adventures of an unlikely pair. Follow us if you dare....

Monday, November 7, 2011

The One About, well, EVERYTHING!

The One about, well, everything!
Who knew I still had a blog, it’s amazing really. I almost forgot about this little thing here. Ok, not really but I have been extremely neglectful. But I have great excuses, I promise! Today will be bullet style just to give a few recaps, and my goal this week is to finally catch up on all my race reports and the happenings in my life.

§  October 22 I ran 13.1 Dallas with my dad and stepmom. I was also running this race for World Vision. This was my Dad and stepmom’s first half marathon! They finished in 2:53. I got to finish with them and I was so proud of them!!!

§  The following weekend Lisa and I went to Los Angeles. We took a few days vacation and were there to run Rock ‘N Roll Los Angeles.
§  At RNR LA I got an 8 min PR!!!!! Super excited about that.

§  Also, by completing RNR LA, I had just finished 3 Half Marathons in 22 days! I never thought that would be possible, and I thought surely I’d be crawling over the finish line, hurting and dead tired. But instead, I’m ready for more!
§  The pain in my right leg had almost completely gone away – the foam roller is hands down the most important part of training for me! I will preach that foam rolling for as long as I live! The pain is still there on occasion, and shorter distances are hard for some reason, but because of foam rolling, icing and pain meds I’ve been able to really make improvements and become stronger.
§  This past weekend I didn’t have a race, I was a kind of relieved. However, I was off traveling again, this time in Searcy, Arkansas visiting my Uncle, Aunt and Cousins. I went with Nanna and we had a very relaxing weekend.
§  While there I had a meeting set up at Harding University (the private, Christian college that my uncle works for) with the head of the Physical Therapy school…just to explore my options!
§  I also had an amazingly successful long run while there; Searcy is a small town and so I ran from my aunt and uncle’s house all the way thru downtown, over to campus, around campus, on the University’s track and then back thru downtown and back to their house. Overall my run was 10 miles. I ran the whole things in 1:59 flat! That is the fastest I’ve ever run 10 miles and I felt great. I was also happy because there was no soreness afterwards. This run was so relaxing and beautiful. The weather was perfect and the trees and scenery were wonderful.

§  I’ve been traveling so much and I’m just ready to be home!
§  Due to travelling so much, work has been super crazy and very busy, I am in love with my new job, but it is definitely time consuming!
§  This weekend I’m headed to San Antonio with Lisa and Lucy to run Rock ‘N Roll San Antonio. I’m really excited because I know several blogger/twitter friends that are running. And RNR LA was such an awesome race experience that I’m totally looking forward to this one.
§  I signed up for three more races in the past week, yep, I’m that person (ok, so one of them was only the Turkey trot, but still!). One is in December, the other one next May, both of which I’m very excited about (and details to come later!). Alex and I will be running these together, and I think it’s so amazing that even though running is not his thing, and racing is DEFINITELY not his thing, he still wants to enjoy the experience with me. Such a sweet guy!

§  When I signed up for the Turkey Trot today, I did something I’ve never done before – I elected to not be chip timed. It saved me $5 and I have my Garmin, I don’t really need official results. I’m also hoping that this may in some small way give me an incentive to actually run faster. I really want to be under 1:35 this year. My Dad is running with me (see, he caught the running bug from me too!) and I told him I really want some time redemption from last year. This race started it all for me and I want to see improvement. I know I’m capable of a 1:35 time, however, this will be my third race in 18 days….hmmm. Not sure how the legs will feel and what will happen, but I’m motivated.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The One with a 3 mile bust

So last night I had 3 miles on my schedule. I looked at it and laughed. Three miles you say? “Easy”, “fun” and “fast” were the thoughts running through my head. Michelle was going to meet me and I figured we’d do the old neighborhood loop for old time’s sake. We started out and we both had good energy, yet I instantly knew that this was it, this was the bad run I had been waiting for. It had arrived. Little did I know this run was going to bring me to tears. Mile 1 was painful, but usually it just takes me a while to settle in, and besides, we were only doing 3…famous last words! We did mile 1 in 12:19 and when I saw that my instant thought was, “oh crap!” It was too fast, no wonder I was hurting. Yet again my mind said, only two more, hang on, because you are strong. Yet last night, my pain was much stronger than I was. I barely made it another quarter mile before I had to pull up and stop.
My whole right leg, and by whole, I mean everything from my glutes, to my IT band, to my quads, to my groin, to the ligaments around my knee, to my calf, to the outer part of my ankle just hurt. Painfully! I have an extremely high pain tolerance, good? Maybe, but it’s probably more of a bad thing than it is good. Mile two was trying to run some but mainly just walking. And even walking hurt tremendously.
My mind began racing…”why now? I have 7 races in the next 8 weeks! I can’t be injured now. What am I going to do? This is awful! What about my marathon……!!!” I was a mess, to say the least.
I was able to run the last mile and actually did it in fairly decent time (not completely sure the pace, but I know it was fast). I immediately got in my car and called Alex, and then proceeded to lamented to him for the next half hour (the poor guy!) Every thought and possibility went through my mind and you better believe he heard it all:
 What if I go to the doctor and they tell me I can’t run? (Well they probably would tell you not to run)
I can’t NOT run, that’s ridiculous!! (Well, then maybe you need to cut back some)
But I have paid for these races, I can’t just skip those (what if you didn’t run during the week and then just ran the races)
That might have to be the solution for the moment, but what about my training plan and my mileage? (Well what if you injure yourself even worse?) ß Ah the annoying voice of reason!
And it went on like that; Jumbles of thoughts running through my minds. I went home and then cried to my mom (I can’t cry in front of the boyfriend yet, he’s not ready for that!). The control freak in me is just so scared and discouraged. I was improving. I was enjoying the runs. And it’s just what I do; you can’t take that away from me.
I spent the next hour and a half icing and foam rolling and lathering up with muscle rub, all of which did help, it’s not better, but it helped. So that made me feel a little bit better, at least it made me feel like this might be a manageable thing if I am extremely diligent about icing and foam rolling.
So where does that leave me? Well for this week at least I’m going to take it easy. That being said, my normal Wednesday night run will be skipped, I may attempt a few miles on Thursday, but I may just cross train instead.  I have a half marathon on Saturday which I have already planned to do at an easy pace. I’m doing this race with my dad and stepmom and I have told them that this is their day, so I go at their pace and do what they do. I’m not racing and I have no intentions of beating any certain time goal. And from there, well icing and foam rolling every day will be done. Cross training will be done. And I will also not be doing any back to back running days; clearly my body needs to recover. But from there, only time will tell. I hope that I find relief soon and if you have any advice for me, please, I will welcome it!

Monday, October 17, 2011

The One with a weekend of wedding stuff

NOT my wedding, my sister’s weddings. That’s right, both of them are getting married next year. Sara and Luke are getting married in April and Rachel and Matt are getting married in August. Oh and my really good friend Karen is getting married in April, too. I’m the Maid of Honor in all three of the weddings; I guess I shouldn’t tell anyone how much I dislike weddings and the process that leads to them…
Anyways, so my sisters were here to do “wedding stuff” this weekend. Sara specifically needed to find a caterer (done!) and “The Dress” (done!). Dress shopping took most of Saturday and after three places and countless dresses and styles she found “the one”. My mom cried. She cries easily but hadn’t cried all day until this dress, I think it was meant to be.  Originally it was just Sara that was looking for a dress, but Rachel actually found hers as well, double score!!
Earlier that morning before the marathon dress shopping began our cousin Taylor happened to be in town for a couple hours and we met up with her and her mom for breakfast. It’s always good to see Taylor, she’s always been like another sister to us and so it’s fun to spend time with her.

She got my sisters these adorable hangers for their weddings!
She brought me a candle, I guess because I have dogs and they stink, or something, but it was nice, yet not picture worthy.

Saturday night was spent watching the Texas Rangers win the ALCS and make their way to the World Series for the second year in a row!! I love my Rangers and I’m so happy to watch them get this far yet again.
On Sunday morning the ladies and I had plans to run 7 miles….they both cancelled on me.

So as tempted as I was to just roll right back over and go to sleep I knew that I needed to take marathon training seriously and I wasn’t about to start skipping out on the shorter distances this early, so roll out of bed I did. I had a quick bite to eat and drank some water and headed out. I was actually planning on listening to music since it’s been about 3 months since I’ve run with music, but my ipod was dead, so I was alone with my thoughts. I was a bit nervous because I’ve never done more than 5 miles by myself. I was also nervous because as I mentioned before, I’ve been having all good runs lately and I figured it was about time for a really bad run. I started at a nice comfortable pace and just enjoyed the cooler weather and the dark and lonely trail. As I’m running along I knew I wanted to go a little bit faster but I kept telling myself that, “if I get to mile 5 and feel good I can speed up”. I quickly caught on to that and reprimanded myself, of course I’ll make it to mile 5, there’s no IF about it!! So I changed that to, “when I get to mile 5…” but I did not need that apparently. I had it in me, somewhere deep down that yesterday was going to be a good day. I wanted that push yesterday and wanted to feel my legs working.
My garmin beeped my mile 3 and I realized I’d gone from 12:48 for my first mile 12:43 for the second and 12:30 for the third. I told myself to slow down, but I couldn’t. Usually at this point in a run I’m bargaining with myself saying if I make it to this point I can walk, if I make it to this mile I can walk. But yesterday my thoughts weren’t on running, they were about life and about how full of gratitude I felt to be out running. During mile 4, I prayed for Sara and Luke; I ran it in 12:18. During mile 5, I prayed for Rachel and Matt; I ran that one in 12:15. During mile 6, I prayed for my mom; I ran it in 12:08. During mile 7, I prayed for Alex and our new relationship; I ran that mile in I don’t know what since my garmin died exactly at mile 6, but I know it was fast because I was pushing really hard at this point.  I’m not a hundred percent sure on my time, but given when my watch died and when I got home I did 7 miles in 1:26. I was very proud of that.
This was probably one of the best runs I have been on in a really long time (even thought all my runs have been good lately). I felt strong, I got faster, I enjoyed the beautiful weather and got to see the sun rise. I was able to spend time in prayer (thanks ipod!) and just breath in fresh air. It was a great way to start my Sunday morning and kick off my week.
And for your viewing pleasure…a race photo from last Sunday. I actually really like this picture, aside from the fact that I look pasty white, I look really strong! (sorry about the blur, since I stole from the race site it's poor quality!)

Friday, October 14, 2011

The One About the Tyler Rose Half Marathon

First off, I want to give Lesley, from Racing it Off a BIG THANK YOU for all the twitter shout-outs and then to all of you Racing It Off readers for stopping by and joining me on Twitter, I greatly appreciate it!
This past Sunday, the ladies and I were in Tyler for our third half marathon out of four in the Four Season Challenge; I can’t believe we have already done three!! Wow, we rock! Sadly, we haven’t been running together as consistently as we would like and I’ve missed my girls so I was excited to be able to race with them. Lisa left early on Saturday to hit up the expo and pick up our packets for us (according to her it was nothing special at all and we didn’t miss anything!) Michelle and I had things going on all day Saturday and weren’t able to leave Dallas until around 7; good thing it’s less than two hours away!  We made good time and rolled into town a little before nine. We may have also hit up the McDonalds as we headed to the hotel….not going to lie, that was some pretty good pre-race food right there!!
Once at the hotel we all chatted for a bit, laid out our race stuff ( I did some foam rolling, my poor muscles sure needed it!!) and then called it a night around 11. Our race didn’t start until 8 (for the record I much prefer earlier starts, I’m an early morning person anyways, so why wait? Let’s just get going!) and the town isn’t that big so I didn’t get up until 6. Once up it didn’t take long to get ready. Lisa and I moseyed to the lobby to see what was for breakfast only to find out it didn’t open until 7, ugh! We watched the weather channel for a bit and found out that it would be slightly warmer than we had planned on, oh well, anything is better than the Hottest Half right?
Once 7 am hit we were in the lobby scarfing down bagels with peanut butter and grabbing bananas on our way out the door.  We arrived at the race site in plenty of time and actually laughed at the sight of the start line (no offense to anyone, and we are most certainly not race snobs at all, but it was comical at how small and just uneventful the start of this race was). The parking was a bit unorganized but there was plenty of it. The porta-potties were clean, had toilet paper and the lines moved very well, I must say I was pleased with that.

They had a marathon that day and I think about all of twenty people ran the marathon, but they started at 7:30. We saw them take off and then just walked around until it was time for us to start.  Our start was also pretty uneventful and I simply crossed the mat and started my watch and took off. I honestly didn’t pay too much attention to the first mile, I was trying to make sure I didn’t veer too far off pace (starts of races are the worst because I want to go fast with everyone else!).
I do remember miles 1-4 being pretty much a constant, giant uphill. It was the craziest thing ever. I knew going into this race that this course was going to be hilly, we had heard the rumors! But I was not entirely prepared to face what was actually in front of me. We maintained a steady pace and decided to walk for one minute every mile marker we came to. That seemed to work really well for us. The course early on was something that I wasn’t entirely impressed with, there were many twists and turns and some of the neighborhoods were not that great at all. However, as the race went on there were some very beautiful and amazing parts to this course. Nice neighborhoods and just over all pretty areas.
After 4 miles I think we settled into a pretty good rhythm and we weren’t constantly going uphill. There were a few downhills and they were much appreciated. I think I felt the strongest from miles 4-8. I kept right on target and before I knew it we were two-thirds done. Mile 8 Lisa started to speed up and I tried to keep up but knew I couldn’t maintain this faster pace for a whole 5 miles. So around mile 9.5 she stuck in her earphones and went on her way. I tried to keep her in sight but she was much too speedy for me.
This was about the same time that I ran past Lesley from Racing It Off, It was so good to see her and she was kind enough to text me a picture of my rear end. This picture cracks me up because I look so lame, I’m walking!!!! Way to go me!

Anyways, I trudged on until about mile 11.5 and then I hit a slight wall. I would like to say that I didn’t hit a wall at all but at least this is improvement, most of the time I hit a wall around mile 9 and seriously struggle through the last 4 miles, but not that day!
At this point I’m alone and with no music, and I’m watching my watch like my life depended on it. It was mental math constantly trying to figure out just how to keep my time under the 2:50 mark, I wanted a PR so badly.  The last .3 of a mile were the worst in my opinion, there was an uphill that seemed like Mount Everest and I blame it for stealing my 2:49 time!
I still did however manage a PR, it was only by 12 seconds but I will take it and be happy with that for sure!! This race course was by far the hardest race course I have ever run on, yet I still managed a PR. I am very proud of that. I kept thinking the whole time just how strong I felt. The hills were brutal and something I wasn’t used to at all, but I managed and made it work, that made me strong. I felt like time flew by on this race, it didn’t drag like it has in the past and before I knew it I was at the 12 mile marker and almost finished. This was an overall great race experience and I’m excited to see what I am capable of doing if I can have a great day on such a hard course!

So what’s next? 13.1 Dallas is next weekend! I’m very excited for this race because I will be running it with my Dad and stepmom Denise as they run their first ever half marathon! I am so proud and can’t wait to have this experience with them.
And stay tuned for my State Fair post!!! Here’s a preview….

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The one about how this journey started

One year ago yesterday, I walked into RunOn, ready to take my very first Turkey Trot class. I was living in a new city, in a new place and my life was in shambles, or so I thought. Little did I when I walked into that room full of people that I would find friends that would be so important to me over this past year. I was completely unaware of what God was about to do in my life.
 I’ve mentioned before that things had happened in my life that had led me to a point of brokenness and that I was in need of something to move me from point A to point B, and that was why I was there. I had a goal in mind and I wanted to run the 8 mile Turkey trot, beyond that, well beyond that I had no plans; I wasn’t even sure I had the confidence and abilities to run all 8 miles, let alone go any further.
 But I was very, very wrong, and I’m so glad that I was wrong! Because what I found instead has truly changed me as a person. What I found was confidence in myself. What I found was an appreciation for myself. What I found was that I could actually be proud of myself. And what I found were friendships that pulled me through and made me be better and stronger. The depth of how my life has changed is completely lost on many, and that’s ok, I don’t expect others to understand. My family understands some of it, because they were there, they saw my weakest, most humble and torn apart moments. Yet no one was able to feel the vulnerability and pain that was inside of me, therefore no one can fathom the extent of the joy, love and appreciation that is within me now. But again, that’s ok. But don’t think just because people don’t understand that I will stop talking about how amazing running and my friendships have been and are, because that is not going to happen.
I feel so blessed to be able to look back over this past year and see such insurmountable growth and strength. To think that one year ago I struggled to run a mile in under 13 minutes is amazing to me. Yet this past Sunday I ran 13 miles, not just for 13 minutes. And it wasn’t the first time I had done that either! (I promise a race recap is coming!!)
So I sit here today because I’m thankful. I have a heart of gratitude for God’s love in my life. Had I not had this past year of learning about myself and making new friends and seeing how strong I truly was, I’m not sure where I would be; I would probably still be trying to run away, but I’m not anymore. Instead, I’m running with passion and intention!
*Every new beginning comes from some other beginnings end….

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The One With My Thoughts On Running, As Of Late

I know I have been neglecting my poor little blog, however that is not my intention.  I am still in transition between jobs and still figuring out a new office, new responsibilities and a new routine. Hopefully things will settle down and I can actually have a few moments to devote some tender, loving care to this blog that I do in fact love.
As I said in a previous post, just because I’m not blogging doesn’t mean I’m not running, I’ve been running a lot actually. The other day while out on a run I just started contemplating what feels different about my running over the past month, so I thought I would share some thoughts with you.
Monday night I ran 9 miles, yes that’s right, 9!!! I was so stinkin’ proud of myself. I’m also proud because I kept a great pace (12:50) the entire time and still had energy to pull an 11:08 mile for the last mile!! This run felt almost effortless. The first 2 miles my right leg was in some pain, but I never let myself stop and eventually I found a great rhythm and just kept running. My legs felt strong and my endurance felt great.

This brings me to my second thought – I haven’t had one bad run in over a month! I’m not sure if this scares me or excites me. My runs generally fall into the pattern of good run, bad run, bad run, ok run, good run, etc. But I’m not joking when I say I haven’t had one bad run in over a month….I’m trying to relish the feeling without being too skeptical
On these so called “good run” I’ve found my endurance to be great. The pace is always conversational and I never truly feel winded. My legs generally ache from time to time but I feel over-all strong in my running and like I am able to continue on and enjoy it. This makes me excited to see what I’ll be able to do this fall as far as learning to grow and push my pace a little bit.
The cooler weather is making all the difference in the world when it comes to running. It’s so nice to be able to go out and just enjoy the weather and not be pouring sweat and worrying about dehydration.
I am genuinely excited about running a marathon, not even lying. It sounds strange, I know, but lately since all my runs have been good runs and I’ve felt so strong I can’t help but get excited about seeing how far my body will take me. A year ago I couldn’t even run a mile, today I feel strong and ready to conquer a marathon!
I’m still having lots of right leg pain; my IT band, hip flexor and glutes are a mess! And no, I still haven’t gotten that foam roller I said I would get two months ago. That is so happening tonight! The pain is manageable and not too intense, but I also know that it’s not normal and I need to do something about it NOW, lest I find myself sitting out of a lot of really fun races I have coming up. So today is the day, I will foam roll and work on being better about caring for myself.
On Sunday we have our 4th half marathon this year (4!! That’s crazy!!). It will be in Tyler and it’s a Boston qualifying course (nothing special really, it just sounds impressive). Two weeks ago I actually had the opportunity to run 8+ miles in Tyler, the hills were brutal! I’m not looking forward to that, but I am thankful I know what to expect. I’m actually very excited about Sunday because of all the good runs I’ve been having; I’m hoping that translates into a great race day!!
I’m still raising money for World Vision and so if you want to help out a good cause you can still make donations by clicking the World Vision logo on the top right of my page. The race is in 16 days. I will be running with my dad and stepmom as they complete their first ever half marathons! I’m so proud of them!
I have finalized, typed, printed and started using my official marathon training plan! I’m hoping to be able to get that onto my training page sometime in the next week (I would say by the end of this week, but let’s be real folks; I haven’t been too consistent with the blog lately!). I am excited to share it with you.

I think that’s about all I have for now….I probably could go on, but it would all be just ramblings, so I shall spare you.

Friday, September 30, 2011

The One With Five Foods

Five Foods

1. Probably my all time favorite food would be mexican food. I always like a good taco, rice and beans and a good enchilada. I try not to indulge in mexican food too often but it is definitely a treat when I can!

2. Nanna's macarroni and cheese
There is just something so nostalgic and wonderful about her homeade macarroni and cheese. It's what I grew up on and will always turn to as comfort food. It's really quite simple, yet so heartwarming and tasty.

3. Tea Cakes (My great-grandmother's sugar cookies)
Mama (pronounced Mo-mo) used to make these amazing cookies. Again, they are something I grew up on and they will always remind me of her. It was probably one of the very first things I ever learned how to bake and I have many good memories of being with my sisters and cousin covered in flour, rolling out dough and making the perfect cut-out with her right by our sides.

*I actually had to pause here and spend a great deal of time thinking about my favorite foods. The first three were easy, yet I realized as writing those that I place a lot of emotion with certain foods. I'm not sure if I find that a good thing or not. I'm really not an emotional eater (at least not that I'm aware of) and food really does not drive my day. I could care less about fancy meals and high quality foods. Food to me is low-maintenance. I like food, yes, but I don't have strong feels one way or another to certain things. There are foods that give me good memories because of the context in which they are always in my life, such as the macarroni and tea cakes; those aren't things I make on a regular basis, and actually to be honest I have never made them for myself, they are only ever had and shared with my family, which is why they are important. So when I think about this particular list, it's odd to find favorite foods because it's really not the food that is the favorite thing, it's really the people that make the food so special.

4. State Fair food
yes, I'm one of those...I usually don't care for fried foods and try to avoid them when I can but I absolutely love once a year going to the Texas State Fair (which starts today!!) and trying every single cool new food they have managed to deep fry. I love the corny dogs (a once a year staple for sure!) and fried onions and a new favorite is the fried s'mores! Yet once again, this is more of a great sharing of the event for me than it is actually about the foods, and I can't wait to share with you all the joys of the state fair!!

5. Taco Soup
I love having a crockpot full of taco soup on a cold winter day and being able to come home and get a big bowl and curl up on the couch and enjoy it. This is probably one of my favorite go to meals in the winter. It's packed full of protien and then add in some sour cream, cheese and chips...yum!!! And it's the easiest thing in the world to make!

Friday, September 23, 2011

The One with Six Places

6 Places:

1. I want to go to London, England someday.
It just seems like such a romantic place to me. The idea of palaces, royalty and the long-standing history intrigues me.

2. San Fransico
I would love to see the Golden Gate Bridge, the crazy streets and the pretty houses.

3. Prince Edward Island

Anne of Green Gables made me fall in love with the beauty of this place and I would love to go and experience it someday.

4. Vermont
Is that just not a beautiful picture? I'm not sure why I want to go to Vermont. I guess it would originate from my love of the movie White Christmas and the Pine Tree Lodge.

5. Rome
I would love to go to Rome and see all the rich history and culture there.

6. The Olympic Games

Now I realize this is not a specific place, but I would love to go the oplympic games someday, it will happen! Too bad I can't cross London and the olympics off in one trip.... Oh well, someday I will experience this!

What are some places you would like to go?

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The One with the Second Verse

Here I am folks, same song, second verse: I’m a blog slacker and need to repent!!
I would not lie to you, I really am busy, so let me just fill you in on the happenings in Unlikely Runner world.
I have a new job, I have mentioned this before, I know. I am still working at the same place, same people, same boss, just new responsibilities. However, I did move offices, which was a bit of a pain. And then add to that the fact that I don’t usually like change, and this was my first real job ever, I got sentimental about moving desks and offices. I also was not only doing the job I was hired for, I was also taking over two other jobs because they seemed to think I was capable and we had no one at the time to fill those responsibilities. So that leaves me here, in my new office, training two new people on the jobs that weren’t really mine but that I was doing and also trying to learn the responsibilities of my new job. Like I said, busy!!
I may not be blogging, but I am actually running (shocking I know!!). My running fever has returned and I am still managing to get in three runs a week. Cross-training and my weight-lifting is lacking but as long as those runs happen I’m good. (It’s 17 days until my next half marathon….I best get my booty into gear!)
If you do want to keep up with my workouts I always update my dailymile account (you can befriend me here), and I Twitter (follow me here).
This past weekend I needed to run 8 miles to keep up with my training plan, but I was too lazy to do it. (in my defense, my sister was here and I wanted to spent time with her!) So that meant that Monday night it was now or never for those 8 miles. To be honest, my lack of motivation finally got the better of me and I just got so fed up that motivation poured out of me like none other! Michelle agreed to run with me but she didn’t want to do 8 miles. So I decided I would do 5 with her and then finish up with 3 more at home. I’m really not sure what got into me but that was the best 8 miles I have ever run in my life! Maybe it’s that I’m pushing myself when I run on the treadmill. Maybe it’s the nicer weather. Maybe it was I’ve been missing my running buddies….I have no idea. But we killed those 5.25 miles! We stopped once exactly at the half way point for me to go into a local school and use the bathroom, but other than that we kept a steady pace and never walked once. I was so proud of us. I drove home (which is right across the street from where we met) and immediately hopped on the treadmill and did 3 more miles in 32 minutes. My overall total for the day was 8.25 miles in 1:38 (11:55 pace). It felt awesome and needless to say I was a bit impressed with myself!
Last night I knew I needed to get a hill workout in and had plans to run with a guy from church after Bible study. We set out to the run the two miles to “the hill” and then did 4 hill sprints (ugh, total reminder of how out of shape I am) and then walked half a mile and then ran the mile and a half back. Overall we did 4.3 miles (running, not including the walk) and 4 hill repeats in 52 minutes (12:10 pace). This was also another great run for me and left me feeling mighty proud (so this now means I’ll have a really crappy run next time right?).
Since I’m burning the candle at both ends lately I most definitely had one of these this morning (and I won’t lie, I will be having one tomorrow morning too, they were on sale for 2 for $3).

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The One about our home gym set-up and the best tempo run ever!

A couple of weeks ago these lovely things made their way into our guest room!

I just haven’t had the chance to blog about them yet. I love having these right in the next room, it’s so convenient, yet it really cramps my making excuses style! With these things I’ve lost at least 5 excuses (the gym is too far, I don’t have workout stuff with me, I don’t have gas in my car, it’s too hot, It’s too late….), maybe even more than that. It’s the ultimate lazy feeling when you are lying in bed watching TV with a treadmill and elliptical both staring at you from the other room, talk about guilt trip!
So I bet you are wondering if I’ve had these machines so handy where has my mojo gone? Beats me, I’m as fooled as you guys! It’s been a rough few weeks around here and I was starting to get really discouraged. But, I am happy to inform you that last night I told my laziness to shove it and I hopped on that treadmill and had planned to do 4 easy miles. Well 4 easy miles became a progressive run which then became 5.5 miles! That’s right, I pounded out 5.5 miles in 61 minutes and each mile I got faster and faster! I honestly felt like I could have done about 2 more miles but my right hip flexor was tightening up and my left hamstring is a bit sore. Plus I didn’t really want to overdo it and ruin myself for the rest of the week, I need this mojo to last me!
5.5 Mile progression:
Mile 1 – 11:32
Mile 2 – 11:19
Mile 3 – 11:06
Mile 4 – 10:54
Mile 5 – 10:42
0.5 mile cool down – 11:32
Overall an 11:10 pace!

I apologize for the blur!
I was quite pleased with the workout for the night. It was good to be up and moving, it was good to be running and it was amazing to feel so good running! Now, I do know that the treadmill may make things easier, but I did have it on an incline of 1 and to me, miles done are miles counted and that’s all that matters! Welcome back running mojo, how I have missed you!

my workout supervisor!

Monday, September 12, 2011

The One with a Trip to Austin

This weekend my Dad and I had a Father/Daughter day and went to Austin to enjoy some University of Texas Longhorn's Football.

This is something that my dad and I can definitely relate on; he being a UT alum and I, well, I just need a better team to cheer for other than UNT Mean Green! I was raised on Longhorn Pride and when asking my dad as a kid what his favorite color was it was always "burnt orange" and were sad to find it wasn't in the crayola box! My sisters, with their passion and pride for the Texas Tech Red Raiders, find my behavior hideous, but I don't really care. I cheer for Tech when I can, but my Texas Heart belongs to the Longhorns! My dad and I left early so that we would have time to walk around campus and go to the co-op and enjoy being in Austin. We got there right at 3 (for a 6 o'clock game) and oh my goodness, it was like I had died and gone to Longhorn Heaven! There were tailgaters and people all over the place and it was awesome! We scored some awesome tickets and a parking pass (Thanks Davis family!!) and had no trouble parking.

We walked around campus, Dad showing me a few things he remembered and then we ended up at the co-op, got some longhorn gear and had lunch at Pita Pit (never been there but what an awesome place!). I wanted to get to the stadium early and watch the players warm up and all the pregame activities. To me, there are very few things that are more exciting than a longhorn football game in Austin! I love the atmosphere, I love seeing a sea of burnt orange, I love the traditions and the passion involved.

Singing "Texas Fight" and "The Eye's of Texas Are Upon You", they just give me chills! I love it, all of it! And I was so glad I was able to share it with my dad. It was a great day and a fun time was had by all!

p.s. sorry for the unedited pictures!

Friday, September 9, 2011

The One With Seven Wants

7 Wants:

1. To be a physical therapist someday.
When I was 10, I got injured preparing for a gymnastics meet and was in a cast for 6 weeks and then spent another 6 weeks in physical therapy. I never was able to return to gymnastics but I did become intrigued by physical therapy. Then in college I spent time as a personal trainer and it was then that I really saw the importance of a career in physical therapy. Unfortunately, as hard as our society tries to be proactive and focus on prevention, that is sadly just not the reality of the world that we live in. As a kinesiology major I always knew I wanted to help people, but I'm not sure the dream of being a physical therapist ever set in a reality I could achieve until recently. Now, I am prayerfully considering my options and going to see where God leads me.

2. To have a healthy family.
Although this is entirely out of my control I find it so important to live a healthy lifestyle for myself and chose a partner who choses the same things so that we can hopefully pass on good habits to children someday. I think the greatest gift a parent can give their children is their health. No matter what else a child may need they will always have love if you are healthy enough to be there for them.

3. To travel in Europe and see different parts of the world

4. Spend time serving through missions in other countries that are less fortunate

5. Go to the olympic games some day to spectate

6. Run a marathon (on target to accomplish this in March!)

7. Run the Boston Marathon, then my life will be complete!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

The One About My 8 Fears

8 Fears:

1. I'm terrified of snakes, the horribly creep me out, ugh! I also do not like spiders!

2. I have a very "worst-case scenario" type brain at times and I often fear that my mom or sisters will die in some horrible freak accident. I know, it's strange, but I really hate it when they don't answer their phones. I've been known to call my sisters on multiple occasions because my mom won't answer her phone. I really have no idea where this fear comes from.... anyways, moving on....

3. Never having a job that I just feel so unbelievably proud of (or more specifically, not being able to go to and finish Physical Therapy school)

4. Not being finacially secure.

5. Not being able to have biological children. I understand this seems weird, but it's a fear that I have simply because it's so important to me.

6. Running/ overuse injuries and not being able to accomplish my dreams

7. Cancer

8. Of losing someone I love.

Honestly, this one was hard for me. I think a year ago I was definitely a very fearful person. I was constantly worried about the future and about what would happen in my life. I was in a very insecure place. But since my world has changed so much in the past year I have truly been able to witness God's unfailing love for me and I've seen the truth in His protection and as a result not too many things phase me anymore. I don't get overwhelmed the same way I used to. All those fears that I listed are there, but honestly, I never think about them, they are more just realities of certain situations, yet I know that if any one of those things happened to me, or even if all of those things happen to me at one time, I would still be just fine and I would be a stronger person for it. I have friends who's lives are consumed with worry and fear and it breaks my heart because there is no joy whatsoever in their lives and it is constant bondage. I just wish I could help them see how God truly does love and guide their lives at all times, because I've seen it and it is absolutely amazing!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The One With 9 Loves

9 Loves

1. My Sisters.

I love those two more than anything! They have shown me the most amazing examples of unconditional love and sacrifice and I am forever grateful for that. They are both beautiful girls inside and out. I have learned so much from Sara's sense of adventure and travel and from Rachel in her strong will and hard work. I also dearly love their boyfriends, Matt and Luke and I'm super excited to add Luke to the family soon! Aren't they so cute!?

2. My Mom

She has taught me how to be a strong woman in times of trials. She has done amazing things with her life and has successfully raised a wonderful family. I only hope that one day I can be as successful as her. She is a very caring and giving person and will be there when you need her no questions asked. She has done so much for me in this past year and I am so grateful for her constant support and friendship, it blesses me daily.

3. My Dad (and Stepmom)

I have not always had the best relationship with my dad, the teenage years were very hard on us. But after lots of hard work we have both reached a point in our relationship where I could not imagine not having his friendship and guidance in my life. My dad and I have always had a lot in common and enjoyed many similar things and it's nice to be able to share those with him. I have watched not only him, but my stepmom as well giving me love and support without question many, many times and it makes me so thankful for their part in my life.

4. My dogs

Pippen - my little scraggly man!

Ace - he can be a snob sometimes!
I love my dogs to the moon and back, they are a complete part of me. I'm not some weird dog person and think my dogs are humans, don't misunderstand, but they have provided so much love to me when I needed it the most. Last year when my life crumbled before me their constant companionship in my life was exactly what I need to move forward. I needed them to need my care. I needed them to just be there and listen and let me cry. And I need their warm snuggly bodies next to mine. My dogs are precious!

5. Reading
I absolutely love a good book. My love for books started early when my mom would read to us before bed. We would also listen to many books on tape. I remember the first books that just made me fall in love with reading were Nancy Drew books. I could sit for a whole afternoon and read an entire book in that time. My love for a good mystery has not changed but as I've gotten older I've tried to expand my tastes just a bit. Reading is a love that my cousin Taylor and I share and we are always exchanging books with each other! I can't wait to someday read to my kids and pass that on.

6. Running

This is more of a love/hate relationship here. But overall I have come to absolutely love running, my running buddies and the comfort and healing that running has brought me. I could go on, but I'll let my blog do the talking on this love interest!

7. My Church home and friends

I was so blessed to have been given such an awesome group of people to be friends with at my Church. The friendships I've made there are so amazing in my life and I have been so grateful. I am daily amazed at the love God has placed in my life. The love that now fills me is a direct reflection of being obedient to God and seeking Him and His righteousness in my life.


Christmas is my absolute favorite time of the whole year, I cannot express my love for this holiday. There are so many traditions, so many memories and so many fun times associated with Christmas in my mind. If you know me, then you know how wonderfully I can relate to Clark Griswold, sad, but true.

9. Texas Ranger's Baseball

I am a baseball fan thru and thru and I'm definitely Texas proud. I love me a good baseball game! I have many good memories of going to many games with my grandfather over the years and those are memories that I will always cherish dearly.